Trick or treating is a cherished Halloween tradition -- but the combination of so many children on the streets and drivers unused to looking out for pedestrians can have deadly consequences. More than twice as many children are killed while walking on Halloween between 4 p.m. and 10 p.m. than during the same hours of any other day of the year, according to a National Highway Traffic Safety Administration study.
As part of the ongoing child safety “What If?” initiative, Children’s Services Council of Palm Beach County and Safe Kids Palm Beach County are distributing 1,000 free reflective slap bands for children to wear with their costumes. The “What If?” campaign also offers these tips for a happy and safe Halloween.
FOR TRICK OR TREATERS AND THEIR PARENTS:
· Children under 12 should trick or treat with an adult.
· Remember to walk on sidewalks or paths. If there are no sidewalks, walk facing traffic as far to the left as possible.
· Cross at corners and watch out for cars backing up or turning.
· Try to wear light-colored costumes. It helps to have your children carry glow sticks, bring flashlights or wear reflective tape or slap bands.
· A costume shouldn’t be so long that a child can trip over it. In addition, face paint or makeup is always preferable to a mask that can limit a child’s vision.
· Avoid having your child carry sharp costume props.
· Turn on your headlights earlier in the day.
· Slow down in residential neighborhoods. Enter and exit driveways slowly.
· Remember that just because you can see a child, it doesn’t mean the child sees you.
· Don’t drive distracted! Put down the smartphone and take out the ear buds.
Parents and caregivers interested in getting the free reflective slap bands can visit one of two locations in Palm Beach County from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday-Friday:
· Children’s Services Council at 2300 High Ridge Road, Boynton Beach.
· The Community Partners office at 2001 Blue Heron Blvd. W., Riviera Beach.
To learn more Halloween safety tips or have someone talk on camera, please contact Shana Cooper at 561-740-7000 ext. 2170 (office) or 561-628-9913(cell). We also will be giving live demonstrations with a child to help illustrate Halloween safety tips. Please contact Shana Cooper to arrange a time to film the Halloween safety tips in action.
The What If? campaign is a child safety initiative by the Children’s Services Council to provide parents and caregivers vital, life-saving information that protects children in the home and in the community. What If? campaign partners include: Child & Family Connections, Drowning Prevention Coalition of Palm Beach County, Florida Department of Children & Families, Palm Beach County Government, Palm Beach County Fire Rescue, Palm Beach County Health Department, Palm Beach County Sheriff’s Office, Safe Kids Palm Beach County, Safety Council of Palm Beach County and the Palm Beach County School District.
Children’s Services Council of Palm Beach County provides leadership, funding and research on behalf of the county’s children so they grow up healthy, safe and strong.
Children's Services Council of Palm Beach County
2300 High Ridge Road
Boynton Beach, FL 33426